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Chucklefish Reveals New Look For Witchbrook

Chucklefish has made a name for itself with some high-quality releases, including Starbound and Wargroove, and is also known for having stepped in to complete publishing duties on the wildly popular Stardew Valley. The UK game studio had more recently made waves with its announcement of Witchbrook, which many observers have described as looking like a cross between Stardew Valley and the Harry Potter stories. After a good deal of enthusiasm around the initial announcement, Chucklefish has remained very quiet on the project for some months. The reason for that now seems clearer, as the game has seen a dramatic facelift, and is sporting a new isometric artstyle.

To get a sense of what’s changed, look at this previously released screen, which shows off the old art style.

And now, take a look at these new screenshots, just releasing today.

Chucklefish describes its game as a “magical school and town life simulator.” Players control a witch-in-training as they seek to hone their abilities, go to classes, and eventually aim to graduate. At the same time, your magical avatar may also fish, grow crops (with the aid of magic!) and track down reagents like mushrooms. In short, it seems as if the game will focus on spellcasting with an equal focus to figuring out a date to the prom.

Chucklefish is both developing and publishing Witchbrook, and today launched a new website for the game. No platforms have yet been announced. We also don’t have a release date yet; Chucklefish highlights that its studio is a no-crunch studio, under the belief that it results in better games and healthier developers, so we may have a wait before we can launch into our own magical school careers.




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PC

Respawn Reveals Most Played Apex Legends Characters

In a recent interview with video game magazine Game Informer, Apex Legends general manager Dusty Welch and game director Chad Grenier touched on which Legends are played the most and how characters evolve over time.

Like most games with a hero or character pool, players drifted towards different Legends more in each season, but Wraith and Pathfinder were consistently high picks across the board. In the interview, Welch and Grenier spoke about which Legends were the most popular.

“Caustic has been from a pro player or tournament standpoint. He’s been an interesting player favorite, especially when they get into the final areas,” said Welch.

“We’ve seen in competitive play Wattson has been a popular pick. It also changes with the game. When we released the Winter Express game mode, Gibraltar was by far the favorite,” said Grenier.

Ever since the 4.1 update, Wattson has become less of a must-have pick thanks to Respawn nerfing some of her more unfair characteristics. Before the patch, Wattson was able to hold six grenades in only three inventory slots, allowing players who found big enough backpacks to stockpile grenades and bombard others with what seemed like a never ending supply of grenades.

Players used this method a lot, with interior spaces becoming a death sentence in most games. The only counter to this was to have a Wattson yourself, with her Interceptor Pylon destroying incoming ordinances, like grenades. Respawn responded to this infuriating meta by patching the character, limiting her to one grenade per inventory slot and bringing the bombardments to an end.

Legends character Bloodhound was changed in patch 4.1 as well, with his abilities being altered to reflect his original concept more. Bloodhound is a recon character, with the ability to track down or “hunt” down players with the Eye of the Allfather, which now has three times the range.

Before the update, this ability was only good for locating a player inside the same building or behind a rock, now Eye of the Allfather can be the hunter he was always meant to be. The only downside is the ability now takes twice as long to recharge.

Welch and Grenier also hinted at what else could be coming in Season 4: Assimilation, with Grenier being cautious to reveal too much.

“I don’t want to spoil too much. We will be having some stuff announced shortly that will be pretty exciting for everyone. I will tell you that we just locked in our plan for some major content coming in 2020 which has made the team very excited… We’re trying to tell more story and we’ll have more characters and depth there. We have more great animated content coming, It’s an exciting year for sure.” Said Grenier.

Apex Legends Season 4: Assimilation is currently running on PC, Xbox One, and PS4. Now is a great time to jump back into Apex, with Season 5 set to link the Apex canon with Respawn’s other popular title, Titanfall.

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News

New Nintendo Direct reveals ARMS coming to Super Smash Bros. Ultimate

The new Nintendo Direct is still not what fans have been waiting for, with no new first party games, just ports like XCOM 2 and Burnout Paradise.

At some point you’ve just got to wonder whether Nintendo are actively trolling their fans. The fourth Nintendo Direct of 2020 has just happened and it’s still not a full-size, general topic one.

It’s the closest we’ve had so far, in that it announced a variety of new full-price games, but it was designated as only a ‘Direct Mini’ and didn’t feature any new titles from Nintendo themselves – which means we still don’t have any idea what they’re going to release for the rest of the year.

What we do know though is that the next DLC fighter for Super Smash Bros. Ultimate will be someone from ARMS, although Nintendo hasn’t said who yet – perhaps because they’ve already warned that development of the DLC has been set back by the coronavirus pandemic.

https://youtube.com/watch?v=uVHwnp7YA2U%3Fversion%3D3%26rel%3D1%26fs%3D1%26autohide%3D2%26showsearch%3D0%26showinfo%3D1%26iv_load_policy%3D1%26wmode%3Dtransparent

Despite the ‘Mini’ designation, the video above is almost 30 minutes long and reveals a variety of previously unexpected third party ports, including three 2K compilations that are all coming out on 29 May:

  • The XCOM 2 Collection (XCOM 2, War Of The Chosen, and four DLC packs)
  • The Borderlands Legendary Collection (Borderlands 1, 2, and The Pre-Sequel)
  • BioShock: The Collection (BioShock Remastered, BioShock 2 Remastered, and BioShock Infinite: The Complete Edition)

Burnout Paradise Remastered is also coming to Switch, at some undisclosed date in the future.

Bizarrely, Panzer Dragoon: Remake and Star Wars Jedi Knight: Jedi Academy are being released today (pre-release hype, who needs it, eh?). And so too is a demo for Square Enix’s Bravely Default 2.

https://youtube.com/watch?v=mX-vU5_WLIs%3Fversion%3D3%26rel%3D1%26fs%3D1%26autohide%3D2%26showsearch%3D0%26showinfo%3D1%26iv_load_policy%3D1%26wmode%3Dtransparent

The previously announced remaster Xenoblade Chronicles: Definitive Edition was also given some airtime, and will come with a new epilogue story and is also coming out on 29 May, for some reason.

There was also some Animal Crossing: New Horizons news, that we’ll get into separately, a bit more info on the Pokémon Sword and Shield DLC, and a new content update for Ring Fit Adventure.

All this happened without any warning whatsoever (unless you count the numerous rumours) and was just dumped on YouTube before anyone even realised.

Whether that means it was a hastily rescheduled, or re-edited, Direct is hard to say but it’s a peculiar way to carry on even for Nintendo.

It also means that, now Animal Crossing: New Horizons is out, they still don’t have a single major new first party game scheduled for release this year, and now that this Mini Direct has happened it’s even harder to guess when they’ll break their silence.

https://youtube.com/watch?v=yCYAX19NSTo%3Fversion%3D3%26rel%3D1%26fs%3D1%26autohide%3D2%26showsearch%3D0%26showinfo%3D1%26iv_load_policy%3D1%26wmode%3Dtransparent

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News

Microsoft Reveals The Power Of Xbox Series X

Today on Xbox Wire, Microsoft revealed the full specs for Xbox Series X, and let Digital Foundry and Austin Evans take this powerful hardware for a test drive. The hardware used for these hands-on sessions isn’t the final model that will ship to retail, but Microsoft is clearly comfortable enough at this point to say this is what the Series X will be.

The tests highlight the power of Series X, which Digital Foundry points out is “capable of running four Xbox One S game sessions simultaneously on the same chip.” In the video below you can see just how much faster Series X can load games.

We’re still going to get some load times, sadly, but they are dramatically reduced on Series X.

Xbox Wire‘s Editor-in-Chief Will Tuttle also broke down how Quick Resume works. “Since game states will be stored directly in the system’s SSD, they’ll even persist after you turn off the console, unplug it entirely, or even take a system update,” he wrote. “One of the testers on the team unplugged his console for a week, then took an update, and was still able to continue right where he left off without so much as a loading screen.” You can also see this feature in play in the video below:

And Microsoft continues to bang the drum of ray tracing as a key next-generation feature. The hands on sessions delivered impressive ray tracing results, showing how they produce more realistic environments and sound, which will even benefit the back catalogue of games if developers update their games.

Below is the full rundown of specs for Xbox Series X:

CPU: 8x Cores @ 3.8 GHz (3.66 GHz w/ SMT) Custom Zen 2 CPU
GPU: 12 TFLOPS, 52 CUs @ 1.825 GHz Custom RDNA 2 GPU
Die Size: 360.45 mm2
Process: 7nm Enhanced
Memory: 16 GB GDDR6 w/ 320mb bus
Memory Bandwidth: 10GB @ 560 GB/s, 6GB @ 336 GB/s
Internal Storage: 1 TB Custom NVME SSD
I/O Throughput: 2.4 GB/s (Raw), 4.8 GB/s (Compressed, with custom hardware decompression block)
Expandable Storage: 1 TB Expansion Card (matches internal storage exactly)
External Storage: USB 3.2 External HDD Support
Optical Drive: 4K UHD Blu-Ray Drive
Performance Target: 4K @ 60 FPS, Up to 120 FPS

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eSports

League of Legends reveals Pajama Guardian Urgot for April Fools

On March 23, League of Legends uploaded a trailer for new April Fools Day skins that revealed Pajama Guardian Cosplay Urgot. Last week, Pengu Cosplay Tristana and Furyhorn Cosplay Veigar were revealed in an adorable splash art teaser. In the teaser, Tristana and Veigar appeared to be standing on top of another champion.


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          Players had fun guessing the mystery champion featured in the splash art. Many players suspected Sett, Braum, or Teemo to be the hidden champion in the splash art. However, Riot had an even bigger surprise and revealed Pajama Guardian Urgot for the last April Fools skin.

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          Pajama Guardian Cosplay Urgot’s fabulous abilities

          For starters, Urgot seems to have a familiar companion flying alongside him in the rift. Players who are fans of Ezreal’s Star Guardian skin recognize the little sidekick to be Yuuto. Yuuto can only survive in Ezreal’s gauntlet, which makes it safe to assume Urgot is cosplaying as Star Guardian Ezreal.

          Similar to Star Guardian Ezreal, Urgot features blue blasts of orbs and stars in his abilities. For example, Urgot’s enhanced auto-attacks shoot rainbow rays, stars, and have a wide blue burst. Urgot also launches a gorgeous blue gem spear towards an enemy for his ultimate ability. After the enemy is targeted with Urgot’s ultimate, a purple ribbon spews from Urgot’s belly and pulls the enemy in. The accompanying video displays Urgot in his adorable pajamas with his new magical abilities.

          Why is Pajama Guardian Cosplay Urgot a big deal in League of Legends?

          Ever since the release of the first set of Star Guardians, players have begged Riot Games to make Urgot a Star Guardian skin. In fact, tons of fan art exists of Star Guardian Urgot. The thought of Riot making Urgot a Star Guardian skin has become a beloved meme amongst players. Moreover, players were curious to see a cute skin for Urgot.

          Despite Urgot having no connection to the Star Guardians besides cosplaying as one, the wish for Star Guardian Urgot has come true. Now players can wreak havoc on the rift as Urgot while rocking a blue Yuuto onesie.

          For more League of Legends news, tune in to Daily Esports!

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        News

        Overwatch Officially Reveals Its 32nd Hero: Echo

        After months of speculating who the 32nd hero in Overwatch would be, we finally have our answer: Echo. The female-inspired AI character has been in Blizzard’s back pocket since before the game’s release, and it’ll soon be available within Overwatch for the very first time.

        We first got a glimpse of Echo within the 2018 Overwatch animated short, Reunion, where it was revealed that the character had been locked inside a payload before being rescued by McCree. Key art for the hero was then leaked among a few other unreleased characters back in October of 2019. Then, Echo appeared in the Overwatch 2 trailer when it launched at BlizzCon 2019.

        Despite all of these recent hints, plans for Echo began before Overwatch had even launched. The character was originally named Iris, and had appeared in the original pitch deck back when Overwatch was still in its planning stage and had the name, “Prometheus”.

        Although it’s uncertain what type of hero Echo will be just yet, in its original form, the character had a particle beam attack complete with a speed boost and a shield. Considering that many of these features have been used on other characters in the game, it’s likely that Echo has experienced a complete redesign once or twice.

        We’ve also been given a good deal of new information regarding Echo’s back story, thanks to a new animated origin story. The hero was created by Mina Liao, an original member of Overwatch and former engineer of Omnica Corporation. After realizing the evil she helped to create, Echo was the engineer’s attempt at rectifying things.

        Jeff Kaplan has also stated that Echo is going to be an extremely important character to the Overwatch universe, and a large story is apparently planned around the hero. We’re assuming this will tie into Overwatch 2′s launch in some way, which will supposedly bring a larger focus on story content and PvE gameplay.

        We’ve still yet to learn what role Echo will play in the game, or even what class the hero will be. Either way, Blizzard’s plans for the character point to a bright future for Overwatch as the game continues to build on the formula that has already brought it so much success.

        Source: Dextero, Overwatch Wiki

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        News

        Overwatch reveals that Echo will be its next hero

        Overwatch revealed today that Echo will be the team-based shooter’s next playable hero.

        This will be the first character that Blizzard Entertainment has added to Overwatch since Sigma‘s release in July. This is the longest gap between new heroes since launch. Blizzard is also working on Overwatch 2, which does not yet have a release date.

        We first saw Echo at the end of McCree’s animated short, which came out in November 2018. After that, it was only a matter of time before she would come to the game, although it was unclear if Blizzard would release Echo for Overwatch or wait for the sequel.

        So far, the reveal has only shown off Echo’s origin, giving us a glimpse at the creation of this advanced robot. You can watch it below.

        We don’t know anything about Echo’s weapons or abilities, or when she’ll be available. Once she is released, she’ll become Overwatch’s 32nd hero.

        Overwatch launched back in May 2016. It available on Xbox One, PlayStation 5, Switch, and PC. The shooter has been a big hit for Blizzard, attracting over 50 million players. Things have quieted down for the title a bit as Blizzard focuses on Overwatch 2, but the release of this new hero should bring some excitement back to the game.

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        eSports

        Overwatch reveals Echo as the next playable hero

        It’s been over half a year since Sigma hit live servers in August of 2019, and Blizzard has finally announced the next Overwatch hero. Hero 32 will be Echo, who Blizzard confirmed for release at BlizzCon 2019 with their Overwatch 2 announcement.


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              What we know about Echo

              Echo is an Omnic who was created by Mina Liao as her “echo” to help make the world a better place. McCree captures Echo from a military train in the lore. He reactivates her and informs her that Winston is recalling Overwatch agents.

              Players got their first glimpse of Echo in the Reunion short, where she was in the payload on Route 66. Blizzard would eventually announce that she would be a future hero at BlizzCon 2019, and speculation has ensued ever since.

              Introducing Echo.

              An evolutionary robot programmed with a rapidly adapting artificial intelligence, Echo represents the cutting edge of technology.

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              Echo will most likely be a Support hero. Overwatch currently has 16 damage heroes, eight tanks, and seven healers. Another healer would even out the squad, and at first glance, she looks to fill that role. If the past is a good resource, we can expect to see her in the Public Test Region (PTR) and a new set of patch notes in the next few days.

              How will Echo change the game?

              New heroes in Overwatch are few and far between, but each of them generally has at least some impact on the metagame. Some heroes, like Brigitte, made an instant and powerful impact on the game. Others, like Wrecking Ball, took some time for players to learn.

              Depending on how strong Echo is and what she brings to a team, she could potentially alter the metagame if teams need to play around her. At the very least, it is likely that more players will be queuing up to heal and try her out.

              Be sure to stay tuned for more news and information about Echo! We should know more within the next few days.

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            eSports

            Using 3 UAVs at once reveals every enemy on the map in Call of Duty: Warzone

            Great things happen when some of the most popular content creators come together.

            Streamers CouRage, Dr Disrespect, and DougisRaw stumbled upon a unique Call of Duty: Warzone interaction today when they used three UAVs at the same time. The simultaneous usage of the killstreaks allows the team to see every enemy’s location and the direction they’re looking in for the entire duration of the UAV.

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